Samsung Electronics Co. has fallen 26 notches in this year’s Global CR RepTrak 100, a global survey that rates multinational companies based on their corporate social responsibility (CSR) reputation.
The company placed 90th in this year’s rankings, which were recently published by Boston-based consulting firm Reputation Institute (RI).
It moved down 26 notches from 64th place last year and ranked even lower than the 89th in 2017 when it dropped 69 spots from the previous year due to the arrest of vice chairman Lee Jae-yong and the explosion of the Galaxy Note 7 smartphones. It was the lowest ranking for the company since RI started to release the survey in 2012.
Samsung’s CSR evaluation is terrible in light of its high brand recognition. Recently, Brand Finance, a consulting firm specializing in global brand evaluation, estimated the value of the Samsung brand at 103 trillion won (US$86.26 billion), including that of the Samsung Electronics brand worth 83.20 trillion won (US$69.68 billion), the fifth highest among leading global companies.
Starting with the 25th spot in 2012, Samsung Electronics had remained among the top 30 between 2013 and 2016. It placed 26th in 2013, 17th in 2014, 20th in 2015 and 20th in 2016. However, it has failed to make the top 50 since 2017.
RI has not explained exactly why Samsung Electronics saw its ranking decline this year. But, analysts say that the trial of Lee, greenhouse gas emissions and investigations into the company’s alleged suppression of labor union activities may have adversely affected the company’s reputation.
The top spot this year was taken by Danish toy company The Lego Group. LG Corp. ranked 40th in this year’s CSR rankings, overtaking Samsung Electronics, though it moved down nine notches from last year.